July 3, 2019

NO ONE HAS IT HARDER THAN THEIR FATHER DID:

Which countries achieved economic growth? And why does it matter? (Max Roser, 6/25/19, Our World in Data)

The average person in the world is 4.4-times richer than in 1950. But beyond the global average, how did incomes change in countries around the world? And why should we care about the growth of incomes? These are the two questions I answer in this post.

The two charts in this post show the level of GDP per capita for countries around the world between 1950 and 2016.

The first chart shows the level of GDP per capita at four different points in time: 1950 in purple, 1970 in yellow, 1990 in green, and the latest available data for 2016 in green.
The chart at the end shows it at two points in time: On the vertical axis you see the level of prosperity in 1950 and on the horizontal axis you see it for 2016.

GDP - Gross Domestic Product - measures the total production of an economy as the monetary value of all goods and services produced during a specific period, mostly one year. Dividing GDP by the size of the population gives us GDP per capita to measure the prosperity of the average person in a country. Because all expenditures in an economy are someone else's income we can think of GDP per capita as the average income of people in that economy. Here at Core-Econ you find a more detailed definition.

Look at the world average in the middle of the charts. The income of the average person in the world has increased from just $3,300 in 1950 to $14,574 in 2016. The average person in the world is 4.4-times richer than in 1950.

Posted by at July 3, 2019 12:01 AM

  

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